FILLING the void left in the Brisbane Lions forward line by Jonathan Brown will be near on impossible, but the club is eyeing three or four options to beef up its attack in 2015.
Brown retired last season, leaving the Lions with a tough task to replace the three-time premiership star and top goalkicker of the past decade.
But newly appointed captain Tom Rockliff told AFL.com.au's First Bounce that the club would be aiming to develop a more flexible set-up near goal.
"It's going to take a little bit of time, but Michael Close is training [well] and we'll probably go for a bit of a different looking forward line this season," Rockliff said.
"We get Brent Staker back, and Luke McGuane is back from his knee troubles as well.
"We've obviously got Stefan Martin and Matt Leuenberger both up and firing at the moment, so … we might have two or three [targets] down there and also might see a midfielder rest deep at times as well."
There is a sense of optimism around the Lions this season, after the off-season additions of star midfielder Dayne Beams from Collingwood and Allen Christensen after a trade with Geelong.
They also secured former Carlton midfielder Mitch Robinson, who Rockliff said offered the Lions a hard edge they had missed in recent years.
"It's something we've probably lacked a little bit up here, so it's good to have him as well," Rockliff said.
Expectations will also rise for the club's impressive batch of second-year players after stellar first seasons at the top level last year.
James Aish, Darcy Gardiner, Daniel McStay and NAB AFL Rising Star winner Lewis Taylor were all selected at the 2013 draft, and Rockliff said the younger Lions all looked set to improve in 2015.
"It's a really good group that we've got together. They've all gone to another level," he said.
"They've matured again, put on a little bit of size and [we] can't wait to see them in the NAB Challenge and really see them start their season well and hopefully cement their spots."
The Lions open their pre-season campaign against St Kilda on Saturday at Burpengary near Brisbane.